Forward Deck Box Installation
The need for more storage on deck was a need that had to be satisfied. I had no place to put the inflatable dinghy during a passage except down below in the main salon. To my way of thinking this was not a solution. I also had 50 feet of BBB chain and 600 feet or 3/4" nylon anchor rode that needed a home. I have my primary and secondary anchors on the bowsprit rollers. I have a third anchor that is a 44# Bruce stored in the aft deck box, but did not have room for the rode. The only solution was to build a deck box on the fore deck. There was room there between the forward hatch and the midcabin hatch. If I made it low enough it would not interfere with the staysail.
I decided to make the box out of fiberglass. I had purchased some Strongwell Extren plate fiberglass for the bulkhead between the garage and the head so I used some of that as the main structure. I had to build a base so that the box would sit on the deck and a lip around the top for the lid to fit over. I made a mold for the lip, and then made several pieces to put on the box sides. The top was made from a mold that I constructed. The top is solid fiberglass with PVC pipe cut in half and then glassed into the top for strength. I wanted the top, or lid, to be strong enough to walk on.
The construction of the box went very well. I had help with advice from friends that worked at Dockside Designs in Seabrook. They had done a lot of fiberglass work so they helped with a lot comments! I basically did all of the work making the molds, laying up the parts, and doing the final gelcoat work. When I installed the box onto the boat, I used 3M 5200 to adhere the box to the deck. After seven days I fiberglassed over the flange to the deck. It was a quick job, and in the future I will have to fill in , smooth out and then put another coat of gelcoat over the area